Before They Were Stars: Celebs Who Overcame Childhood Illnesses, Abuse and More

What Halle, Padma and Nicole did, and how you can help your kids get through it (18 Photos)

Melissa F. Pheterson on Sep 29, 2011 at 6:07PM

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Before They Were Stars: Celebs Who Overcame Childhood Illnesses, Abuse and More

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Ricki Lake: Weight Issues

The actress and talk show host has struggled with weight all her life and was pigeonholed into “fat girl” roles like Hairspray’s Tracy Turnblad until she decided she wanted to be known instead as “the girl who used to be fat.” Last summer, Lake launched a campaign called AllStride to help families manage their weight. “I personally know what it’s like to be an overweight kid,” she wrote on the AllStride website. “That’s why I always said if I ever had kids, I would make sure they had perfectly balanced, healthy meals -- and lots of fun, physical activity … Well, promises about parenting are a lot easier to make -- and keep -- when you don’t have kids!” Thanks to intense workouts for the new season of Dancing with the Stars, Lake reports she’s whittling inches all over.

Advice for parents: Lake is just one of the millions of moms struggling to raise healthy kids in today’s society. Says Dr. Dawkins: “I like to teach parents the 5-2-1-0 rules: Eat five servings of fruits and vegetables a day, limit screen time to two hours or less, get at least one hour of physical activity a day and keep sugar-sweetened beverages at zero. If families can incorporate some of these lifestyle changes into their daily routines, children, in general, will be a lot healthier.”

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